Brazil Activist Group Hosts "People's Cup" in Rio Favelas

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
June 3 2014 6:03 PM

Brazil Activist Group Hosts "People's Cup" in Rio Favelas

Mvd6612288
From a protest over problems with Brazil's public health care system.

Photo by TASSO MARCELO/AFP/Getty Images

With the World Cup nine days away, residents of Rio de Janeiro are voicing discontent with the government's heavy-handed preparation for the tournament by having a soccer tournament. Favela residents from Rio are competing in Le Copa Popular, hosted by an activist group called the People's Committee of the World Cup and Olympics. From Al Jazeera:

The idea wasn't new. The Poor People's World Cup was played in South Africa in 2010, in response to the 2010 FIFA World Cup held in the same country. Similarly, the alternative games in South Africa were organised to protest evictions, removals, and the barring of local venders from designated FIFA areas.
Advertisement

Six teams will face off in the finals on June 8. The competition follows a Pew Research Poll that shows a majority of Brazilians agreed with a statement calling the World Cup a “bad thing because it takes money away from public services.” Preparations for the Cup have also involved numerous evictions, while local vendors will be barred from selling near stadiums.

Irene Chidinma Nwoye is a writer and Slate intern in New York City. Follow her on Twitter.